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iPhone 5 tops 5 million units on launch weekend

updated 09:03 am EDT, Mon September 24, 2012

Record for iPhone, still below some analyst numbers

Over 5 million iPhone 5s were sold during the launch weekend, Apple has announced. "Demand for iPhone 5 has been incredible and we are working hard to get an iPhone 5 into the hands of every customer who wants one as quickly as possible," reads a prepared statement from CEO Tim Cook. "While we have sold out of our initial supply, stores continue to receive iPhone 5 shipments regularly and customers can continue to order online and receive an estimated delivery date. We appreciate everyone's patience and are working hard to build enough iPhone 5s for everyone."

The figure sets another record for iPhone launch sales, beating out the 4 million achieved by the iPhone 4S. It is however below what some analysts were calling for, the most extreme prediction being up to 10 million. Before launch Apple registered over 2 million preorders in a space of 24 hours. It's not clear how many of the 5 million sold over the weekend were preorders.

Apple has also revealed that more than 100 million devices have been upgraded to iOS 6, which was released just last Wednesday. This is in spite of widespread criticism of the firmware's Maps app, which abandons ties with Google. Users have complained about inaccuracies, missing features, and in some cases badly-rendered graphics.

By Electronista Staff
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  1. Mr. Strat

    Forum Regular

    Joined: 01-23-02

    I'm liking my iPhone 5. I used the assisted navigation on Saturday morning as I traveled to my legal residence some 73 miles away. There were a few cases of some graphic weirdness, but nothing that would make me drive off a cliff or into a river. I'm not concerned. It's pretty decent for a Version 1 attempt. And the voice is much more natural than Android's robotic sounding voice.

  1. Charles Martin

    MacNN Editor

    Joined: 08-04-01

    I did a modest test of the maps where I live (in North America) and it worked exactly like Google Maps did.

    I'm not saying there aren't problems with Apple Maps -- I don't live in Japan, for example, I don't rely much on public transit, and my city appears to be very well-mapped (and I've never used Street View on my iPhone). Just adding a data point that, for me, the whole GPS driving thing works exactly as it did before -- except that the maps are much more visually pleasing.

    I'm very confident that six months from now this brouhaha will blow over, though I understand that users NOW who need the maps they had NOW are justifiably a little miffed at Apple for removing the Google Maps app. IMO Apple should have simply moved the Google Maps app to the last page (heh) but kept it around until they felt sure Apple Maps was as good or better, THEN deleted it. So bad move on Apple's part overall IMO.

    Still, I think part of the "outrage" comes from people who are new to Apple. This company takes chances, and sometimes makes missteps or just plain fails. MOST of what it does works great out of the box, but if you're going to get on this train you should know that (like EVERY OTHER company out there), sometimes they step in it. This is the risk you take when you INNOVATE and take risks. I'm sure Apple was aware that Maps wasn't fully-baked, but figured it was good enough (and that third-party transit apps would fill in the gap) until it was. That was a mistake, evidently.

    I remember when they revamped iMovie (and Final Cut Pro and a dozen other programs over the years). OH THE WAILING AND GNASHING OF TEETH. For six months. Then the updates arrived (or people just got used to it) and guess what ... now they love it.

    I suspect Maps is like that. A year from now it will be your best friend.

    As for the sales, I suspect Apple could have sold many, many more (judging from severe shortages where I am) if they'd been able to make more. Sharp's dropping the ball on screens probably hurt them. Looks like they'll easily sell a few mil more in the first week once the replenishing shipments arrive.

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